CWG 2022: Indian men's hockey team defeats Ghana 11-0 thanks to three goals by Harmanpreet Singh



The Indian Men’s Hockey team got off to a rollicking start with a dominant 11-0 win over Ghana in their opening match of the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games on Sunday. Dragflickers Harmanpreet Singh (10′, 35′, 53′) starred with a hat-trick, while Jugraj Singh (22′, 43′) bagged a brace in the match. Abhishek (2′), Shamsher Singh (14′), Akashdeep Singh (20′), Nilakanta Sharma (38′), Varun Kumar (39′), and Mandeep Singh (48′) scored a goal each to help India pick up a massive win in the Pool B.





Abhishek, who scored in the second minute of play after Harmanpreet's strike from the penalty corner rebounded off the pads of the Ghana goalie, gave India the lead thanks to an attacking start to the game. In contrast, Ghana swiftly replied and was awarded a penalty corner in the third minute, but the Indian defense was able to stop the threat. The Indians increased their assault on Ghana's defense and added two more goals in the opening period. In the 10th minute, Harmanpreet scored the game's second goal from a penalty corner, while Shamsher scored the game's third goal in the 14th. Abhishek created a lovely motion.


In the second quarter, the Indians appeared more dangerous as the forward line increased the defensive pressure on Ghana. In the 19th minute, they received a PC, but Varun Kumar failed to convert it. India went on to increase their advantage to 4-0 thanks to Akashdeep's ferocious tomahawk shot a minute later. Jugraj, a young drag-flicker, scored in the 22nd minute when he successfully executed a penalty stroke to increase the score to 5-0. In the 25th minute, Ghana made a rare aggressive play that earned them back-to-back Penalty Corners, but they failed to take advantage of their opportunities.



After regaining some vigor, Ghana made a strong start to the second half, earning a Penalty Corner right away. However, Ghana was denied the short corner thanks to a strong video referral from India. A few minutes later, India won another penalty corner, but this time, Ghana's Duisberg Offei produced an incredible save to prevent an Indian goal. In the final ten minutes of the third quarter, India scored four goals as they kept up their unrelenting offensive. Nilakanta and Varun joined the party following Harmanpreet's second PC convert in the 35th and 38th minutes, respectively. After the third quarter, Jugraj converted the PC to score the ninth goal.


India kept up their assault in the fourth quarter by making risky penetrating runs inside Ghana's circle. The tenth goal for India was scored in the 48th minute by seasoned attacker Mandeep. Soon after, Harmanpreet scored his third goal, bringing India's advantage to 11-0 when he converted a PC. Ghana had an opportunity to score their first goal in the last moments, but India stopped them. In the last moments of the game, the Indians maintained the majority of ball possession and made sure they maintained a clean sheet.



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